So when I am home some buddies and I will occasionally get together for board game nights at a bar in Louisville, CO. This time I had brought with “Last Friday” in hopes I could talk some helpless victims into playing. I was successful in my pitch and convinced 4 of them to join me. This game is a lot of fun. It is an asymmetrical game where one player plays the undead maniac killer and everyone else plays the 5 campers. Whats nice about this game is that it can be played with 2 to 6 people. One player is always the maniac and the other 1-5 players plays the 5 campers, there are always 5 no matter the amount of players, so 1 person could play all 5 or split it up as you have more players. Each camper is one of 5 colors, there is also 3 campers per color in case 1 gets knocked off you pick another of the same color for the next chapter. In addition each campers has some sort of special ability that can be used, such as moving twice, or placing traps further away.

At the start and throughout the game campers will find clue tokens which will give them an item. These items can give the campers certain one use abilities such as hearing if the maniac is near, or placing bear traps to slow him down. These items have important strategic values so they must be used wisely. The campers move on the game board with their associated color’s meeple. The game board’s movement is specified by dots, dots without numbers are the movement paths for the campers, dots with numbers are for the maniac. Campers and the maniac can only move to one adjacent dot, unless they have a movement bonus of some sort. The maniac’s movement is kept hidden behind a DM screen, and depending on the chapter every three moves you reveal either where you were three moves ago or where you are currently. The maniac also gets maniac tokens which grants him special abilities, these are very useful in that they can hide your movements, or give you the extra speed you need. Read More

Cracking on to Thanksgiving and Black Friday.

This was the first Thanksgiving that I have ever spent away from family, so it was the first year we’ve ever had to put together our own Thanksgiving meal.  Staying in someone else’s home, in addition to preparing a meal for only two, led us to the decision to make a quick and easy meal we would be able to reheat for lunches.  So, we fired up the InstaPot, and made a quick and simple beef stew with veggies.

While I prepped the stew and made some homemade mashed potatoes, Ian went off into the hills with his camera gear, and got some great shots of the sunset (the header image).  Unfortunately, when he parked, he chose a spot that was a veritable quagmire.  When he packed everything up and hopped back into the car, he found the tires had sunk into the mud, and that he was stuck.  Fortunately, several years ago my mom gave us a set of traction recovery, off-road tracks, and he was able to get himself out after only a couple tries.  When he walked through the door, he turned to me and said, “I’ll never give you crap about those things again.”  High praise, indeed.

As he cleaned up for dinner, the InstaPot finished cooking, and dinner was served.  Even though it was just the two of us, we had put together a legitimate feast.  Along with the stew and mashed potatoes, we also had fruit, rolls, a cracker and cheese plate, and sparkling apple cider.  For putting together a Thanksgiving meal for the first time, I think everything turned out quite well.  The InstaPot made the stew in just about an hour, and it was perfectly cooked and juicy.  Once we have a home to call our own, we will definitely be picking up an InstaPot right away.

For dessert, we had picked up a pumpkin pie from Kneaders (yes there was one in Boise too, YAY) and stocked up on some delicious holiday after dinner drink supplies at the store.  While Ian loves his Eggnog with some RumChata, I prefer Chai; and, although it’s great with Bailey’s, the Chai paired great with the cinnamon spice of the RumChata as well. Read More

The drive from Salt Lake to Boise was fairly uneventful, though we did get turned around a bit due to roads closed for construction once we made it to town.  Arriving in the dark, yet again, it was difficult to get a good grasp on the beauty of the mountains and hills surrounding Boise.  When we pulled up to our house sit, we were met at the door by Chuck and Kathy, the owners and our hosts for the next three weeks.

Tami Fe is the cutest little nut, and would leap onto the couch, managing to land on her back for immediate belly rubs.

After showing us around the house and introducing us to Tami Fe (the gorgeous and extremely cute, snuggly, energetic hunting dog we would be watching) Kathy sat us down with bowls of homemade elk chili (which was delicious), and gave us the rundown on how to care for Tami, and any other information we might need to know about the house.  We were a little hesitant to let Tami out in the backyard when we found out she had recently been jumping over the fence (a standard six-foot-tall fence) and running around the neighborhood.  Fortunately we never had any trouble with her scaling the fence while we were caring for her, which was a relief.

As we were finishing up our chili, Chuck and Kathy’s friends, whom they were flying out with to Australia the next day, arrived.  Once introductions were made and we had gotten to know each other a bit, we brought our bags in and got ourselves settled into the guest bedroom in the basement.  The house was arranged with the kitchen, a living area, and the master bedroom on the main floor, with two guest rooms, and another living area with doors that opened up onto the backyard patio, on the lower level.  Other than the kitchen upstairs, it felt like we had our own suite of rooms in the basement while we were staying there.  With a long flight the next day, Chuck, Kathy, and their friends went to bed early in preparation of a sleepless 14 hour flight, and we settled in and got some shuteye as well. Read More